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The Journal Editorial Report

News/Business. Paul Gigot discusses news, politics, society and finance. (CC) (Stereo)

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Paul Ryan 8, Ryan 7, Obama 6, Joe Biden 5, Us 4, Kim 4, Biden 3, Kentucky 3, Denver 2, Jason 2, Dan 2, Barack Obama 2, Wisconsin 2, Mary 1, Schwab 1, Msnbc 1, England 1, Colorado 1, Romney Unlocked Paul Ryan 1, Washington 1,
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  FOX News    The Journal Editorial Report    News/Business. Paul Gigot discusses news,  
   politics, society and finance. (CC) (Stereo)  

    October 6, 2012
    11:00 - 11:30pm EDT  

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>> this week on the journal editorial report the cases in colorado and mitt romney goes on offense. is this the reboot that republicans have been waiting for and can paul ryan carry that momentum in the week's vice-president showdown. plus, could it be a potential g.o.p. pickup in true blue new england? how linda mcmahon is making the connecticut senate race one to watch and the supreme court is back and they're not shying away from more controversy. wait until you see what they've got on the dockets this term. >> if you're running the race you way you described, governor, it's not possible to
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come up with enough deductions and loopholes that only affect high income individuals to avoid either raising the deficit or burdening the middle class. it's math, it's arithmetic. >> get the rates down, lower deductions and exemptions to create more jobs because there's nothing better for getting us to a balanced budget to have more people working, earning more money and paying taxes and that's by far the most effective and efficient way to get this budget balanced. >> paul: welcome to the journal editorial report. i'm paul gigot. a big night in denver on wednesday, as president barack obama, and mitt romney met for the first presidential debate and the candidates sparred as you heard over taxes and the deficit as well as health care. wall street reform and the role of government. with mitt romney taking some sharp shots at the president's record these past four years. >> we're seeing right now is, in my view, a trickle down government approach which has government thinking it can do
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a better job than free people pursuing their dreams and that's not working the. proof of that is 23 million people out of work and the proof one out of six people in poverty, the proof 32 million on food stamps to 47 million on food stamps the proof of that 50% of college graduates this year can't find work. >> paul: there's little doubt romney's commander performance helped the g.o.p. ticket. the question is, how much? let's ask wall street journal columnist and deputy editor dan henninger, mary anna stacia o'grady and kim strassel. dan, how important was this debate for mitt romney's candidacy. >> it was not only very important for mitt romney's candidacy, paul, it was very important for us. i think he both rescued his candidacy and rescued the election. and quite honestly, the election to this point was kind of boring. it was boring because both
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candidates in different ways were making it boring. the president, and there have been reports, was kind of coasting through, thinking he had no real competition from mitt romney. and romney was out there basically, expressioning conservative platitudes without elaborating on them. we get to the debate and what mitt romney does is answer the two things i think most voters were looking for, why do you think that barack obama's presidency failed and what ways have he failed it. and what would you propose alternatives, and better than president obama does? >> he did both of those, went right at the obama record and something the president declined to talk about himself and went deep on his tax policy and his health policy, so he put some entirely new baseline for the election. >> paul: kim, there are a lot of republicans were willing to start writing off mitt romney if he didn't do welcome. i mean, there really were. and they were worried that his fund raising might fall off and there would be a big
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problem. so, is there new momentum, new optimism on the republican side? >> no worries about the fund raising dropping off now, i tell you that. i mean, you have not seen this much enthusiasm for mitt romney since he's ever run, going back to 2008. but i think because he went out there and talked about ideas, this is what the republicans have been arguing he needed to do all along because you can't say it's a choice you've got to prove it's a choice. that's what he did in denver. the most important thing he did, he explained the choices very clearly. he talked about things like growth versus tax hikes, about free market health care versus obamacare and that was the way he needed to explain it to the electorate. >> paul: jason? >> it was a very substantive debate. he did layout some ideas and some plans and that's a good thing, but i think these debates were also about more than substance, demeanor, presentation and what he managed to do is go up there on the stage, stand next to the president and look more presidential than the man himself. and did he that for 90 minutes
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and that made it-- >> and looked him right in the eye, was respectful. >> i thought he was better on obama's anniversary than obama was. >> what about this idea you hear from the left a lot, oh, well, the secret to romney's success in the debate was that this was the moderate romney. that he basically repudiated all of his campaign positions and this is of course what the obama campaign is saying. >> is that true? >> well, i think they're allowed to the fact he was able to challenge the president on things thats' claimed he's saying and democrats famously say that republicans want polluted water and slave work-- sweatshops and low wages for working people. and he was able to challenge those things directly to the president. and he never, you know, it's not nice to use the word liar for your opponent in politics, but he was able to basically layout where what the president has been saying about him is not true.
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>> paul: let's show a clip of the president's frustration with some of mitt romney's answers. >> he says that he's going to close deductions and loopholes for his tax plan and that's how it's going to be paid for, but we don't know the details, he says that he's going to replace dodd frank, wall street reform, but we don't know exactly which ones. he won't tell us, he now says he's going to replace obamacare and assure the good things in it are going to be in there, and you don't have to worry. and at some point, i think, the american people have to ask themselves is the reason that governor romney is keeping all of these plans to replace secret because they're too good? is it because that somehow middle class families are going to benefit too much from them? >> jason, the president have a point? >> well, romney know have not been specific and some of us have been urging him on the
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tax issue. he was very specific on the tax issue. >> he was specific in repudiating obama tax plan thought did he an excellent job of that. the president has been relying on a report that has been debunked left and right by people about how romney wants to raise taxes on the middle class in order to pay for tax cuts for the wealthy. he rebutted that very effectively i thought. but i would also like to see more details. >> paul: he gave a couple of details in regard to, for example, here is how you reduce deductions and exemptions, a $25,000 $50,000 limit that any one individual could use. that was specific offered by marty felled stein of harvard as a way to make tax reform work. >> and both of them embraced the simpson-bowles commission and the simpson-bowles commission put out three different tax rates and each rate you will have to do something with the deductions and exemptions, eliminate all of them or retain them and romney says i'm going to drop
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rates and put all of those deductions and exemptions on the table for negotiation. any serious person in politics knows that's the starting point pour reworking the tax code. you don't have to get into the fine detail at this point. >> paul: kim, what do they have to do to maintain the momentum, the romney campaign. >> you see them doing this. now flooding the zone with a whole bunch of new ads going after the president both on things like the deficit, but talking more about mitt romney's own plans for reform and so they're trying to bulk up their presence out there in the the swing states and really grab this momentum and then they've also of course, got to have a good rest of the remaining debates. no one should forget, john kerry had a good opening debate in 2004 and went on to lose the election and they're aware of that. and he's got to keep this image rolling with the public. >> paul: okay, much more ahead on this week's presidential debate. including mitt romney's takedown of obamacare, a topic he's largely avoided on the
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>> i just don't know how the president could have come into office, facing 23 million people out of work, rising unemployment, and economic crisis at the kitchen table, and spent his energy and passion for two years fighting for obamacare instead of fighting for jobs for the american people. it has killed jobs. >> that was governor mitt romney wednesday night attacking the president on his administration's signature piece of legislatures, obamacare. so, mary, this is typically democratic turf. health care, where did romney score on that issue? >> well, i think he did two things very effectively. one was, remember when he first started running for president against, in the primary when john mccain was the candidate? he tended to like to talk about data, and we even joked how he was so focused on data.
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>> paul: right. >> this time around, mitt romney came out and talked about people he had met, a woman with a baby in her arms who told him how difficult it was, a couple that was not able to afford their health care. and you know, he, i think, made the points that he needed to make about the data, but he humanized them and i think that was a great achievement of his on the debate. >> paul: health care distraction from job creation, you inherit a recession, a financial crisis, and instead of focusing on that, romney is saying, you spent two years trying to pass one of your big priorities in social legislation and that's hurt job creation, a powerful point. >> yeah, it's a good point, but i think the health care issue is not going to go away in this debate. we're going to hear more of it. barack obama was defending his idea of obamacare and medicare and said for instance, that medicare works because the
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insurance companies have to make a profit on top of their administrative cost, medicare doesn't have to do that and it's lowered administrative costs and therefore a better deal. he said that romney's idea of premium support helping people buy insurance in the private marketplace, all economists agree the premium support will cause medicare to collapse. >> now that's an arguable point and i think that romney is going to engage him on those issues and try to continue to make the case for private sector health insurance. >> what i found interesting about this exchange is remember, obamacare was supposed to be romney's achilles heel throughout the primaries, his rivals said he wouldn't be able to challenge on that, and i think he proved a lot of people wrong. >> he pushed right through that and went on offense. >> and it's an example of his effort to reach across the aisle. >> bipartisanship, that's interesting. >> paul: let's look at an ad, a question how the democrats and obama is going to respond. the ad they rolled out after
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the debate. >> i'm barack obama and i approve this message. >> i'm not in favor of a 5 trillion dollar tax cut. that's not my plan. >> the nan partisan tax policies concluded that mitt romney's tax plan would cost 4.8 billion dollars over ten years. >> why won't romney level with us about his tax plan which gives the wealthy huge new tax breakses according to experts he'd have to raise taxes on the middle class or increase the deficit to pay for it. if we can't trust him here, how can we ever trust him here. >> kim, first of all, i should point out they're using the wall street journal's name in vein, we do not endorse-- we think that tax policy center study is completely bogus, but kim, this suggests to me that they are not changing strategy, they're doubling down on their strategy of going after mitt romney. >> yeah, if you thought it was ugly so far, just hold on. and the problem the democrats have is that, what mitt romney
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really did in denver is he demolished to a certain extent their main campaign strategy. their goal was to go out there and present him in a negative light and spent enormous amount of money, saying this guy is an rapascious candidate and presenting barack obama as the alternative. he took a sledgehammer. they can't run on the economy, on the president's legislative record, people don't like it. now they're going to go straight after his character, suggest he has a credibility issue, call him a liar, say that he's a flip-flopper and that's where they'll go for the rest of the election. >> kim is touching on a really important point, which is fear is such a big part of the obama campaign. i mean, he is trying to gin up fear for people who, you know, you have 23 million people out of work and tell them, by the way, this guy is going to take away any chance for health care? >> when romney comes in and looks like he's a reasonable
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guy, a competent fellow, he's not scary and talks about his medicare plan in reasonable terms. >> and that's what i mean. >> you blow up the fantasy, the caricature, rather, of how he's been portrayed and i think that helps. >> that's why the debate was so damaging for obama. >> are we going to see a movement in the poll, dan, as a result of the debate. >> i think we'll see some movement and romney will get a bump. whether he'll get one in ohio is a good question he's got to keep that momentum going. >> briefly, james. >> i think he'll get a bump, but i think the most important outcome for the debate for romney, is that he energized the party and they believe they can win again and i think that's an even more significant accomplishment in the short run than a bump in the polls. >> jason, thanks. >> one debate down and three more to go, believe it or not. the vice-presidential candidates get their turn next week in kentucky. can paul ryan keep the republican momentum going in his face-off with joe biden?
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>> skrooip vice-presidential candidates joe biden get their chance when the two square off in kentucky in the one and only debate. and jason, let's first talk about, i guess it's been six weeks or so since the paul ryan selection. how well has he done on the ticket and added to the romney campaign? >> well, i think he's helped to energize republicans and i think he's helped romney and turned out to be a solid pick and the first role is do no harm and he's cleared that bar. i don't think he's helped as much in wisconsin, romney was hoping to get a pump there and maybe make it more competitive and the real clear politics average, up by about seven
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points and that hasn't panned out and put a bunch of ads out after the convention and wanted to put wisconsin in play and that hasn't worked out. overall, i think that ryan has been a solid pick and part of the debate and there's no evidence that it's harming the ticket. >> paul: kim, the poll right after the ryan pick for the two weeks leading up to the republican convention, showed the race had closed almost to basically to a tie and two different conventions and the gap again, and i think you can make the case that ryan helped and the conventions reopened the gap and this debate could help, could help the campaign again? >> oh, ryan has been a net plus because he's given a foundation to this campaign and i think you probably have to argue that the ryan that you saw in denver this week was in part, a reflection of having a strong candidate like paul ryan by his side. and so that's what he's going to do, paul ryan himself in
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kentucky this week and arguably, he's going to have a harder row to hoe here going into the first presidential debate and barack obama, everyone expected he would win and romney needs to put in a good performance and in fact did very well. the argument here is that paul ryan is so great and he will hold his own, but no one should underestimate joe biden. he's going to be okay out there. >> paul: this may be something of a trap for ryan because you know, the media expectation he's going to do so well and he's a numbers guy and knows his brief and so on, but widen is a real slasher and he's going to go after, i assume, mitt romney, hammer and tong. what does ryan have to do here in this debate? >> well, he's going to have to fight back, paul. there was once a debate called a kitchen debate. this is going to be the kitchen sink debate and joe biden is going to throw one kitchen sink after another at ryan and he is going to bring up the 47%, he will bring up
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the war on women, he will bring up bain capital. he'll throw all of this. >> the entire msnbc agenda. >> exactly. >> will be-- but part of the strategy there will be to pin ryan down on defense, and prevent him from talking about the things he knows best, which are medicare, taxes and financial stuff, the sort of things that romney opened up for him in that initial debate. romney unlocked paul ryan to a certain extent and now he can leverage him if ryan can get the space to talk about it in the debate. >> paul: mary. >> i think what you can expect from paul ryan, he will repeat over and over again, the 716 billion dollars in medicare cuts that obama is putting on people who are right now relying on medicare. and he will show, he will try to show that his plan will actually save medicare while obama will destroy it. i think that's his greatest edge and that's where he's going to go. >> paul: he's got a delicate
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task because i think he has to defend, jason, i think he has to defend romney against what will be biden's task even as he turns around and tries to go after the president's agenda while showing his own competence on substance, on these issues, that's a more complicated taste and biden is basically going to be all in assaulting romney. >> and i think that biden is going to want to talk foreign policy and i think the polls have shown that the president's doing good on that, not as well as he was, that gap has narrowed with the events in the middle east, but still, we killed bin laden and bringing troops home. it will be interesting how team romney respond on foreign policy. >> i don't know if he tries to go too hard on foreign policy in big trouble because of what happened in benghazi, ryan will use that against him and i think damage him very badly. >> but ryan is a rookie on foreign policy, that's not his area of expertise and i've heard him and he sounds more callow than on the budget in some of these things.
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and it's interesting to see if he's done a full emerges on that and does pretty well. >> i'd like to see them get into the battle what happened with the super committee and the deficit last year. joe biden said last week paul ryan walked away from the committee and the details would be fun to listen to. >> ryan has a good answer to that, how the president sabotaged it. more to come in the second half hour, including the supreme court's new term. it's promising to be another blockbuster with racial references, voting rights and gay marriage all potentially on the docket. and foreign policy is set to make a campaign comeback with mitt romney delivering a major speech on monday and republicans holding hearings in washington on wednesday on last month's deadly attack in libya.
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